Indiana’s Weather For Independence Day

July 4, 2012

Happy Fourth! You may want to throw Mister Weatherman into the Harbor along with the tea when I tell you we have four more days ahead of high temperatures a few degrees either side of 100.

I don’t see any widespread weather bombs bursting in air today, but a stray storm is possible this afternoon. The chance is only about 20 percent.

Just plain mostly sunny and hot tomorrow through Saturday. Saturday’s the last day for the Excessive Heat Warning. I’m still promising precipitation for Sunday and Monday, associated with a cold front. Once we get on the other side of that front – temperatures will return to normal. At least, for awhile.

If you are going to the CarmelFest parade today look for me, riding with a giant dog named “Louie” and my “Pet Pals TV” co-host Patty Spitler. Louie gets the seat closest to the air conditioning. The heat index numbers could get up to around 105 by afternoon.

Independence Day always makes me reflect on America’s amazing forefathers. When it comes to weather, Ben Franklin’s the famous flashy guy flying his kite in the storm. But the National Weather Service sometimes claims another revolutionary icon as the first weather watcher.

Thomas Jefferson kept a consistent record of his weather observations, in America, and in Europe. What he did then and what weather watchers do now is fairly similar. Measure precipitation and record highs and lows. Fancy equipment automates some of that now, but Jefferson had his own system.

“My method is to make two observations a day, the one as early as possible in the morning, the other from 3. to 4. aclock, because I have found 4. aclock the hottest and day light the coldest point of the 24. hours. I state them in an ivory pocket book in the following form, and copy them out once a week. The 1st. column is the day of the month. The 2d. the thermometer in the morning. The 4th. do. in the evening. The 3d. the weather in the morning. The 5th do. in the afternoon. The 6th is for miscellanies, such as the appearance of birds, leafing and flowering of trees, frosts remarkeably late or early, Aurora borealis, &c. In the 3d. and 5th. columns, a. is after: c, cloudy: f, fair: h, hail: r, rain: s, snow. Thus c a r h s means, cloudy after rain, hail and snow. Whenever it has rained, hailed or snowed between two observations I note it thus, f a r (i.e. fair after rain), c a s (cloudy after snow &c.) otherwise the falling weather would escape notation. I distinguish weather into fair or cloudy, according as the sky is more or less than half covered with clouds.”

THIS is one meticulous weather watcher! Thomas Jefferson wrote the book on how to do it, and still had time for some other pretty spectacular writing jobs.

And I thought *I* had a lot of gigs.

I’ve attached a reproduction of a page of his meteorological diary for Philadelphia in 1776. No animated graphics, just fascinating longhand entries. Do you see the “high” for July 4th? It was “76.” That’s the Spirit.

Happy holiday! Happy Birthday America.

Average high on the Fourth Of July is 85 and the average low is 66. Records are 103 and 48. The sunrise time is 6:22 and the sunset is 9:17.

10 (Very high.)

“Low-medium” today and tomorrow, and “medium” Friday and Saturday.


Today: Partly to mostly sunny. A stray storm is possible in the afternoon. High 99.

Tonight: Partly cloudy. Low 76.

Thursday: Mostly sunny. High 100.

Thursday Night: Mostly clear. Low 76

Friday: Mostly sunny. High 101.

Friday Night: Mostly clear. Low 78.

Saturday: Mostly sunny. High 100.

Saturday Night: Partly cloudy. Low 75.

Sunday: Partly sunny. Shower/storm chances. High 93.

Sunday Night: Slight shower/storm chance. Low 73.

Monday: Partly sunny. Shower/storm chances. High 89.

Monday Night: Slight shower/storm chances. Low 69.

Tuesday: Partly sunny. High 86.

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